Cost estimates are the feature in Provet Cloud that provides the option to communicate treatment costs to animal owners before beginning with the procedures and when additional treatments are needed over a more extended hospitalised stay. Cost estimates can be easily converted into actual invoice items.
There are several places in Provet Cloud for estimate creation:
- The dashboard - from the green 'Tools' menu on the top right.
- Client and patient page - green 'Estimate' button on the toolbar.
- Appointment entries - click on the entry on the appointments' calendar to preview it, and then use the green 'Create estimate' button.
- The cost estimate database - select the main menu 'Clients & Patients' and the tab 'Estimates'; on it, you can create a 'New estimate' using the green button or view previously created estimates.
- The Consultation page - the general info section and the sidebar. We will look at this case in this guide here.
Creating a Cost Estimate During a Consultation
1. Add a New Estimate from a Consultation
In the consultation general info section, find the 'Estimates' row, and use the blue plus button to add a new blank estimate.
2. Check Estimate Options and Add Items
After selecting to add a new estimate, a new estimate page opens. You can start by adding a title to the estimate as indicated with number 1 on the image below. This can help recognise the estimate later when it's seen in various parts of the system, but it's optional. Next, check the other info fields like the patient selection and optionally add notes (2) to the estimate.
After checking the general details of the estimate, you can start adding items to the estimate. This works much the same way like on regular invoices - you can use the search bar (3), item templates or options specific to item types.
3. Edit Items If Needed and Finalise
After adding an item or multiple items from a template, you can edit each item row using the blue pen button (1). Confirm edits using the green tick button (2). You can also remove a row if it was added by mistake.
Editing or removing rows is possible until you 'Finalise estimate' with the green button option (3) at the bottom of the estimate page. Finalisation is optional but recommended. It should be made when an agreement has been reached with the customer. This avoids any further changes to the estimate and helps to reduce the chance of conflicts. Finalisation is also required for some extra functions like electronic signatures.
Now the estimate is complete and you can either go back to the consultation (4), print the estimate (5), email it (6), or if you need to revert the whole operation, you can archive the estimate (7).
Next, we will also look at how to use the estimate to convert it into treatment (invoice) items.
4. Using the Estimate on a Consultation
On consultations, connected estimates can be found from the general info section or from the consultation sidebar as shown below.
You can click on the estimate name to open it for preview.
On the preview, you can select which items you want to copy to the consultation using the checkboxes on the rows (1). You can also edit different properties.
Using the green 'Copy' button (2), you can copy selected items into the consultation, after which they appear as regular treatment items, meaning they will also be on the invoice.
Showing Estimate Usage Percentually
When estimates are used in conjunction with consultations, it may be useful to see how current treatment costs compare to the sum of the estimate. A department setting located at Settings > General > Department > Department Settings > "Show estimate usage percentually" is available for that. If enabled, estimate usage is shown on consultations percentually.
It is also possible to enable a warning to notify the user that the sum of treatment items is reaching the estimated limit. Settings > General > Department > Consultation general info settings > "Cost estimate limit percentage" controls this. For example, if the limit is set to "90", alerts will be shown if the total invoice sum is near 90% or over it compared to the estimate. Leave the field empty to disable the warnings.
Displaying Procedure Cost Ranges
In some practices, it's common that the cost of procedures like operations is not defined in a fixed way before it is done. In that case, the ability to present the cost of procedures as a range comes in handy. Settings > General > Department > Department Settings > "Enable procedure cost ranges" enables that functionality.
It's also possible to select whether cost ranges are displayed in a single column or not, with the setting "Display style for estimate numeric ranges". Note that this setting exists under department settings and also under print settings at Settings > General > Print settings > Estimate.
Customising Cost Estimate Email Message
When sending estimates by email, a separate, customisable message can be added to the email. Settings > General > Print settings > Estimate > "Custom text in estimate email" controls that.
Customising Cost Estimate Agreement Text
Optionally, an agreement section can be shown under the estimate on the printout (PDF). Settings > General > Print settings > Estimate > "Show agreement section on cost estimates" controls that.
When that setting is enabled, you can also customise the text using the "Estimate agreement text" setting.
Item Ordering on Estimates
Normally, items are grouped on estimates by their type (procedures, medicines, etc.). With the department setting "Enable alternative item ordering on estimates and invoices", you can enable an approach where items are not grouped, but just ordered based on the order they were added to an estimate. Note that this affects regular invoices too.
Ability to Decline Estimate Items
In some practices, it is customary that clients can decline estimate items after the first draft. Provet Cloud has a department setting to enable that extension. Go to Settings > General > Department > Department settings and check the option "Enable declining estimate items" to toggle the feature.
After the feature is enabled, it's possible to mark estimate items as declined by the client by using white X-buttons on estimate rows before the estimate is finalised. Declined rows are marked with red and also have a white checkmark button to bring them back (un-decline). Any declined rows are still printed on the estimate PDF, but are not included in the estimate sum.